As a teacher, one of my main pedagogical goals is to guide my students to be affective communicators of music. This requires well-rounded study of multiple disciplines, such as art, film, and literature. Fostering students’ intellectual curiosity in various disciplines will only enhance their critical thinking, which will deepen their understanding of musical style and context. It is only through thorough understanding and thoughtful preparation that students can convey the emotions of music convincingly.
Another very important goal for me as a teacher is to develop each student’s awareness of the musical challenges presented by a given piece, whether they are interpretative or technical. Always tailoring my advice to each student, I demonstrate the most natural and relaxed approaches to piano playing while emphasizing the correlation between desired sound production and physical movement. Since lessons take up only a fraction of a student’s time, I emphasize effective methods of practice in order to optimize results. It is extremely rewarding for me as a teacher when my students learn to discover and resolve technical and musical issues on their own.
To build solid piano technique, I recommend to my students a balanced daily practice of exercises and repertoire. For example, beyond going through the motion of scales, I teach them to do each exercise with specific technical goals in mind. Once students establish a natural piano technique, they can apply that technique seamlessly to any piece. Exposing students to a variety of repertoire is also very important; it allows them to develop a broader palette of pianistic technique and modes of communication. As a part of this exposure, I also strongly encourage students to explore chamber music in all forms. Generally, I let them pursue the music that most sparks their enthusiasm and plays to their strengths.
I aim to foster a nurturing and positive teaching environment so that my students gain confidence in their capabilities and potential for music. By giving positive feedback with constructive criticism, I present learning as an art of becoming, not as an end result. After all, mastering an instrument takes dedication and discipline—these skills are necessary for survival in any competitive field. It is a privilege for me as a teacher to share my knowledge and insights with my students. I welcome students at any level who wish to develop their passion and potential for musical studies; for improvement itself is the most important outcome.